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The full Strawberry Moon rises on Saturday, June 3, 2023. Will it be pink? What is the true origin of the name “Strawberry Moon” and what are some other June Moon names? Learn more!
When to See the Full Moon in June 2023
On the evening of Saturday, June 3—just after sunset—look towards the southeast to watch the full Moon rise gently above the horizon. There, it will appear large and golden-hued.
June’s full Moon will reach peak illumination at 11:43 P.M. Eastern Time on June 3. Consult the Almanac’s Moonrise and Moonset Calculator to see local rise and set times.
Why Is It Called the Strawberry Moon?
The full Moon names used by The Old Farmer’s Almanac come from a number of places, including Native American, Colonial American, and European sources. Historically, names for the full or new Moons were used to track the seasons. Today, we think of Moon names as “nicknames” for the Moon. Learn more about Full Moon names here.
June’s full Moon—typically the last full Moon of spring or the first of summer—has traditionally been called the Strawberry Moon. While strawberries certainly are a reddish-pink color and are roundish in shape, the origin of the name “Strawberry Moon” has nothing to do with the Moon’s hue or appearance, despite the evocative imagery (shown in the artist rendering below). A Moon usually appears reddish when it it’s close to the horizon because the light rays must pass through the densest layers of atmosphere.
This “Strawberry Moon” name has been used Native American Algonquin tribes that live the northeastern United States as well as the Ojibwe, Dakota, and Lakota peoples to mark the ripening of “June-bearing” strawberries that are ready to be gathered. The Haida term Berries Ripen Moon reflects this natural as well. As flowers bloom and early fruit ripens, June is a time of great abundance for many.
Alternative June Moon Names
Many cultures over time have used different names for the 12 full moons experienced each year. Usually they’re not based on a color, but on a common activity that takes place that time of year.
Blooming Moon (Anishinaabe) is indicative of the flowering season, while Green Corn Moon (Cherokee) and Hoer Moon (Western Abenaki) suggest that it’s time to tend to young crops.
Other names highlight that this is a time of new life: The Tlingit have used the term Birth Moon, referring to the time when certain animals are born in their region (the Pacific Northwest). Egg Laying Moon and Hatching Moon are Cree terms that also hint at a time of many animal babies.
Alternative European names for this Moon include the Honey Moon and the Mead Moon. June was traditionally the month of marriages, and is even named after the Roman goddess of marriage, Juno. Following marriage comes the “honeymoon,” which may be tied to this alternative Moon name!